About Fair Trade

Six Principles of Fair TradeBack

Gender Equality

Producer organizations are required to implement a clear policy on promoting gender equality. Women are able to take up leadership role, enjoy equal pay for equal work and comprehensive range of employment protection, etc.

Know More

On 8 March 2019, the World Fair Trade Organization (WFTO) announced study results, which reveals that most of the Fair Trade Enterprises are led by women. According to this study, more than 300 social enterprises in over 70 countries have women as the majority among CEOs, board members and senior managers. This is very different from the conventional business world.


Among the 326 businesses that are verified as Fair Trade Enterprises by the WFTO:


  • 52 % of CEOs are women (9 % in conventional business)
  • 51 % of Board positions are held by women (12 % in conventional business)
  • 54 % of senior roles are held by women (24 % in conventional business)

Why is there more gender balance in the leadership of Fair Trade Enterprises compared to other mainstream businesses?


One reason is that they are not just driven by profit maximization. People participating in Fair Trade uphold the values of Fair Trade stated in the Principles, which includes commitment to non-discrimination and gender equality.  Therefore, Fair Trade has a gender policy to ensure that both women and men participate in decision-making processes and take up leadership roles.


Fair Trade also fundamentally nurture, support and empower women in ways that mainstream businesses do not.  They have systems that facilitate confidential reporting of any violence, harassment and sexual abuse women experience at work, and they encourage them to become acknowledged in their communities. 


All in all, Fair Trade Enterprises recognize women as having as much potential as men. Women are encouraged to pursue their careers and participate in training programs, which leads to gender equality in the leadership of Fair Trade enterprises.